Elicker currently leads one of the largest state fish and wildlife agencies in the United States. He oversees almost 1,300 employees, including the ODFW Fish Division, which includes substantial Freshwater, Anadromous, and Marine programs responsible for the policy and implementation of sport and commercial fisheries in Oregon.
"This is a critical time for aquatic conservation," said Robyn Thorson, Regional Director of the Service’s Pacific Region." Our selection of Roy Elicker for this Fisheries leadership position reflects our high regard for his personal achievement as well as our strong commitment to partnership with state wildlife agencies."
Elicker will lead the daily operation of the Federal fisheries program in the Pacific Northwest, the largest Federal program of its type in the nation, with a network of 25 field stations and about 260 employees in the states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Hawaii. The network plays a vital role in the region’s salmon recovery efforts, and includes 15 national fish hatcheries producing approximately 60 million salmon and steelhead each year, three fish health centers, two fish and wildlife offices, three fisheries resources offices, the Service’s largest fish technology center and a Lower Snake River Compensation Program office.
In addition, the program actively promotes fish habitat restoration and a robust fish passage and stream reconnection effort. It is a leader in the prevention, detection, and management of aquatic invasive species. Elicker’s portfolio will now include endangered species, notably Pacific lamprey conservation in the Columbia River basin.
Elicker expressed his enthusiasm for the opportunity to lead the region’s fisheries program
."The dedicated professionals of Fishery Resources reflect the finest values embodied by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service," Elicker said. “I am excited to join them in ensuring that habitat conservation and fisheries continue to enrich the lives of all of us who live in the Pacific Northwest."
Prior to his job as Director of ODFW, Elicker was twice Interim Director, the Deputy Director for Fish and Wildlife Programs, and held a host of senior fisheries leadership positions within the state. He has also served since 2008 as the Oregon Commissioner to the Pacific Salmon Commission, an international body that directs activities related to the U.S./Canada treaty on Pacific Ocean salmon harvest. Elicker also served on the Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council, an advisory group for the Department of Interior and Service on recreational fishing and boating issues.
Elicker has Bachelor's and Master's degrees in wildlife biology from Rutgers University, and a Juris Doctorate in Environmental Law from Lewis and Clark College Northwest School of Law. He is an avid hunter, fisherman and outdoor enthusiast.
The Fisheries Program of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has played a vital role in conserving and managing fish and other aquatic resources since 1871, when Congress established the position of Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries in response to concern regarding the decline in natural food fish supplies. The Service has a proud history of leading Federal fishery conservation efforts along the West Coast since the first Federal salmon hatcheries were established more than 100 years ago. Throughout the years, the Service has taken a holistic approach to fishery conservation, focusing on a broad array of scientific fishery management and conservation efforts. Today, the Fisheries Program works with States, Native American Tribes, other governments, other Service programs, private organizations, public institutions, and stakeholders in a larger effort to conserve these important resources.
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov